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Tom Keating
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Technology and Science

Technology and Science

David Pogue's Pathetic List of Predictions

May 22, 2007

I was reading SmithOnVoIP and read how David Pogue, a well-known technology writer for the NY Times, recently made 5 what I call "obvious" predictions. One of his predictions is free landline calls. According to the article, "Prediction Number One: Free Land-Line Telephone Service. Land line phone calls will be free, because of VoIP such as Vonage, Skype and others, said Pogue. Today, you can plug an existing phone into a box that plugs into a cable modem, $15 to $20 per month, for unlimited calls, no taxes or fees (he hesitated briefly noting that perhaps he should avoid making that point to a government audience.)"

So after plugging the heavyweights in VoIP, namely Skype and Vonage, he makes this "bold" prediction about free landline calls.

Clocky the alarm clock hides to block your snooze addiction

March 15, 2007

Do you hate getting up and the blaring alarm clock only results in you hitting the snooze 5 times and arriving to work late? Surely, you curse the alarm clock and accuse it of snoozing for only 9 minutes instead of 10, robbing you of 1 minute extra sleep. (Actually, little known fact, most alarm clocks snooze for 9 minutes not 10.)

Truly, you want to make it to work on time, but ohhhhh how tempting hitting the snooze button just 1 more time is. More Americans suffer from "snooze button addiction" than any other.

BitTorrent Download Movie Site launches

February 26, 2007

Today, BitTorrent has launched their licensed entertainment networl and an enhanced BitTorrent protocol that will allow it to offer copyrighted movies, TV shows, games, and other media. The BitTorrent Entertainment Network will launch starting with over 5,000 titles, including films from Paramount Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Lionsgate, and Warner Bros, as well as episodes of TV shows such as 24 and Prison Break.



According to the company, the service is aimed at young males who regularly use BitTorrent to download pirated versions of the same films and who prefer to watch these video programs on their PCs instead of a TV. BitTorrent is used by millions of users and in fact 1/3rd of all Internet traffic is consumed by BitTorrent traffic. The problem from naysayers is "converting" these pirates into legit-paying customers.



Jack Bauer now must contend with GPS and GSM jammers

January 30, 2007

Agent Jack Bauer CTU (Counter Terrorist Unit) of FOX's 24 fame relies on his trusty GPS-enabled mobile phone to get him where he needs to go, as well as call in Curis Manning from tactical for backup or even airstrikes to specific GPS coordinates. Jack also relies heavily on GPS tracking devices to monitor the location of the bad guys.

But things just got a bit harrier for Jack.  DetectNu, a Holland-based company has come up with a GPS and GSM jammer that you simply plug into your car's cigarette lighter. It will block any planted GPS tracker in your vehicle from transmitting location data back to CTU (or Jack's phone).

It also shuts down GSM mobile phone devices. Hopefully, Jack has a triband mobile phone so he switch to CDMA or perish the thought - analog.



Pontiac G5 Internet Launch?

January 16, 2007

Looks like Pontiac is launching the 2007 Pontiac G5 on the Internet. I just saw a Google video ad on my blog stating that Pontiac is launching the G5 exclusively on the Internet. The images you see are snapshots I took of the Pontiac G5 video.






In the commerical they list off popular digital items, trying to market the Pontiac G5 as a "digital car". They list: digital watch, digital abacus, digital camera, digital phone, digital video, digital card, digital haircut (i.e.






Apple iPhone - more secret than a covert CIA operation

January 10, 2007

Steve Jobs has outdone himself with the successful launch of the Apple iPhone at CES yesterday that continues to cause reverberations and major buzz today. What I would like to know is how Steve Jobs kept the iPhone so secret. In today's day and age where information leaks out faster than the NY Times reveals top secret anti-terrorism government programs -- how was Steve Jobs able to keep the iPhone under wraps?

Apple has been known to sue bloggers that have divulged past Apple secrets, so how did we not see this coming? Sure there were rumors about the iPhone coming out at CES, but there were just as many rumors saying it wasn't going to happen.

Talkster launches public beta

December 11, 2006

Talkster today announced that their closed/invite-only beta is now open the public. Talkster essentially lets you place free calls from your regular cell phone to instant messaging clients such as MSN Messenger, Google Talk, and Gizmo Project. What's nice about Talkster is you don't have to have a telephone number to reach someone - you simply use their buddy (contact) name. Further, Talkster is convenient because it consolidates 3 popular communications services people and allows you to leverage them to make VoIP calls to any of these services using your mobile phone.

OPPO Digital LT2007 20-inch LCD-TV DVD Combo Player Review

November 21, 2006

The OPPO Digital LT2007 20-inch LCD-TV DVD Combo Player is an interesting "combination" device, combining a 181-channel TV tuner, VGA input for PC/laptop video support, built-in DVD player, 5-in-1 USB Memory Card reader, component ports, built-in speakers, and a remote control -- all in a small, elegant, and stylish design that is perfectly suited for kitchens, dorms, dens, or other rooms with limited space. Oppo sent me a review unit to check out and put through the paces.



For my first test I inserted the DVD movie Cellular into the front-loading DVD slot. Similar to cars' in-dash DVD/CD players, the DVD player automatically "catches" the DVD disc as you insert it. Using the ultra-thin remote control, which actually uses a thin watch battery, I was able to easily navigate the DVD menus and start the movie.



Add Segway to the List of Companies with Problems ...

September 15, 2006

(Green)Peace, Baby!

August 30, 2006

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